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(LifeSiteNews) — A recent headline at The Babylon Bee characteristically exposed a growing phenomenon. “Gender Surgeon Gives Patient Appointment Reminder For Reversal Surgery In Five Years,” it read. From the “fake news” report: 

A local doctor made sure to schedule a follow-up appointment with a patient five years out from her sex-change surgery for the inevitable reversal procedure she’ll want to have done. “Yeah, it’s pretty much a given that after the initial euphoria of getting your bits hacked to…well…bits, that patients decide they want their bits back,” gender surgeon Marcus Rankin told reporters. “I try to tell them there’s not much we can do at that point, but they at least want us to give it the old college try and build something from the horror show we created down there.” 

Like so much of The Babylon Bee’s “fake news,” this horrifying paragraph gets at a real truth. Thousands of young people are being ushered on the path to “transition” and told that “gender-affirming care” is literally life-saving—but the medical profession’s interest in these troubled boys and girls vanishes if they realize they’ve made a huge mistake and wish to “detransition.” Detransitioner online forums are filled with despairing comments from those not only suffering awful side effects from the drugs and surgeries, but wondering how they can finance their detransition. 

A few media outlets have covered this story—the National Post published a report last year titled “Canadians who reverse gender transition need better care, advocates say”—but aside from a dissident few, the medical establishment has largely avoided addressing the plight of detransitioners altogether, as their very existence calls into question the efficacy and indeed affirming nature of “gender-affirming care.” According to a 2021 report on detransitioners from the Society for Evidence-Based Gender Medicine (SEGM), the first large study of its kind: 

Most participants reported significant difficulties finding the help that they needed during their detransition process from medical, mental health, or LGBT communities. Only 13% of the respondents received help from LGBT organizations when detransitioning, compared to 51% when transitioning. A number of participants reported negative reactions from LGBT and medical communities, and 51% of the sample expressed that they did not feel supported during their detransition.  

Most detransitioners reported ongoing needs related to managing comorbid mental health conditions (65%), finding alternatives to medical transition (65%), and coping with regret (60%). Half of the sample reported the need for medical information on stopping or changing hormone regimens. A great majority of participants also expressed the need to hear about others’ detransition experiences (87%) and getting in contact with other detransitioners (76%). The study highlights the urgency of providing appropriate medical, psychological, legal, and social support to detransitioners. 

READ: Alabama’s ban on transgender mutilation of children can stand for now, circuit court rules

That context makes recent news from Australian and New Zealand very significant. In December, the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) posted a statement titled “The role of psychiatrists in working with Trans and Gender Diverse people.” Surprisingly, their explanation for a shift in clinical guidelines addressed what detransitioners have long been calling for: recognition of both their existence and experiences. The new guidelines state, for the first time that I’m aware of, that patients who opt for transgender surgeries or drug regimens should be warned of the possible results: 

Sufficient information should be provided to allow for informed consent for gender-affirming medical and surgical treatments. This should always involve thorough, open discussion of the possibility of disappointment, continued gender dysphoria, regret about irreversible effects of treatment, regret about reduced fertility and shifts in gender identity or treatment wishes. Services should also ensure access to care for people who request hormonal or surgical treatment to reverse the effects of previous gender-affirming medical treatment… 

When working with people who have discontinued or reverse treatment or have experienced a change in their sense of gender, psychiatrists should provide individualised care, understanding the experience of the patient in a way that fosters a sense of safety. Psychiatrists have a role in helping people who detransition to understand their feelings toward their transition, noting that they may report feelings of grief and loss. 

That is also one of the first acknowledgements by an elite medical body that the effects of transgender treatments are “irreversible,” something trans activists have consistently and deceitfully denied. During an interview with Sky TV, RANZCP member Dr. George Halas noted that these admissions are genuinely significant, as they run directly counter to the current dominant narrative (which is increasingly being questioned in many European countries).  

“It’s a radical departure from the trend that has been pervasive for the last 10 to 15 years. What I speak of here is the major shake-up is that it defined sex as a biological characteristic that define the human being as being male or female,” Dr. Halas said. “Now for some people, this may seem common sensical. But if you’ve been following and immersed in the debates and seen some politicians being questioned in Senate hearings and elsewhere, to define what is a man, what is a woman and they really sort of struggle, like they really are lost for words.”  

“It is so refreshing to hear the college that I belong to just say that sex is a defining characteristic that goes on also to define gender and gender dysphoria and gender incongruence and all the technical things,” he concluded.  

He’s right. I haven’t been able to find any formal reaction to this development from transgender groups yet—perhaps they’re trying to ignore it in the hopes that most people do not notice this guidance. But we may be seeing a continued shift in the way medical bodies address gender dysphoria—which would be very good news indeed.  

READ: 49 of 50 states saw increased gender dysphoria diagnoses between 2018 and 2022: report


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Jonathon Van Maren is a public speaker, writer, and pro-life activist. His commentary has been translated into more than eight languages and published widely online as well as print newspapers such as the Jewish Independent, the National Post, the Hamilton Spectator and others. He has received an award for combating anti-Semitism in print from the Jewish organization B’nai Brith. His commentary has been featured on CTV Primetime, Global News, EWTN, and the CBC as well as dozens of radio stations and news outlets in Canada and the United States.

He speaks on a wide variety of cultural topics across North America at universities, high schools, churches, and other functions. Some of these topics include abortion, pornography, the Sexual Revolution, and euthanasia. Jonathon holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in history from Simon Fraser University, and is the communications director for the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform.

Jonathon’s first book, The Culture War, was released in 2016.